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Virtual Math Manipulatives

https://toytheater.com/category/teacher-tools/virtual-manipulatives/

This website is perfect for using math manipulatives on the smart board for all the students to see. It even has a timer, spinner, and charts. It has everything you need to meet the Saskatchewan Curriculum outcomes.

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Personal Learning and Contribution of Others

In my last blog post for EDTC300, I will be explaining how I have contributed learnings to my classmates through blog comments, and on Twitter. I will also be explaining my learnings throughout the course. Click on the video below to view my personal summary of learning.


Below are many ways that I have contributed to the learning of others. Where I may have helped others on their learning projects for instance. Twitter comments and posts where I have questioned and answered other posts. These are just a few of the comments and posts I have made on blog posts and Twitter. Below you will find a comment on my Twitter feed that has an “A3” at the beginning. This post was for #SaskEdChat. This was a great experience to be a part of the Thursday Twitter chat to answer questions and read others’ responses.

With this class coming to an end I will always continue in my learning. Especially since technology and digital citizenship are always evolving. I will be continuing to build up my PLN throughout the years and using everything to the best of my advantage. Continue Learning!

Tieing Things Together

With the semester ending, it is time to tie things together. I feel that my learning project has strengthened in the process. At the begging of my knitting process, I knew nothing about knitting. I have done many other artistic activities such as crocheting, hand knitting, cross-stitch and colour by numbers. I love doing things like this because it is mindless and keeps me busy and engaged in an activity other than being on my phone all the time. When I am not working or doing other things I like to do my little ‘mindless’ projects. I got into knitting because it was something that my past family has done. And I thought this would be the perfect opportunity to get into it.

Even though I have learned so much these past few weeks I still feel like I have a lot to learn. I would like to learn how to make a circle so I could make a hat or socks. I would also like to start a larger project such as a blanket. While I was working I was talking to a lady who crotches and she made this beautiful blanket. It had words and such amazing detail to it. It was amazing!

Summary of My Learning Project:

Week One: Welcome to my Learning Project

In week one I explain my reasoning for why I chose to knit and what similar projects I have done before. I also state what I already know about knitting.

Week Two: Starting off my Knitting Process

In week two I show the video that will teach me what I will be using for the next few weeks. I go through the process of finding the yarn and learning 3 new terms for knitting. I am at 7 stitches where I share my frustrations starting off with my dishcloth and my success.

Week Three: I Finished Half of my Dishcloth!

During week three I continued with the basic knit stitch until I hit 39 stitches. I also make a reference to Grey’s Anatomy. As well, as some ‘whoopsies’ I have made in the progress.

Week Four: Looking into an App While Knitting

In week four I discover an app called row counter where I explain what it does and how I can use it during my project. I also state how this app could be used in the classroom and the curriculum.

Week Five: Only 4 Stitches Left!

In week five I learned a few more knitting terms. I also listened to a podcast while finishing the other half of my dishcloth.

Week Six: Last but not Least

In week six I finish my dishcloth and do some research on the pros of knitting. I came across a website where you can donate your knitting and what you can do with it if you don’t know what to do with all your projects.

Digital Literacy and Fake News

Fake News is a huge topic in today’s world. With every social media platform out there, there is fake news. I think Tik Tok is the best example of fake news, I know a lot of people who watch Tik Tok and they believe what they are being told every time! Without doing any follow-up research they just believe what they are being told.

Not just on Tik Tok is their fake news, but on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and so much more.

Why do we believe fake news?

In this short comic You’re not going to believe what I’m about to tell you it tells facts that may or may not be true. It tells facts about pointless things that everyone will blindly agree to and it tells facts about things that play with our beliefs. The comic gives an example of when you are told a fact about your belief you get fired up and angry, you may even want to dispute and argue that it is wrong. There is a reason for these feelings. It is called the backfire effect. The University of Southern California’s Brain and Creativity Institute did a study where they put someone inside of an MRI machine and then the doctor said some counterarguments of political beliefs. This study came to the conclusion that the part of the brain that responds to physical threat also responds to an intellectual one. The side of the brain that responds to these messages is called the amygdala. This side of the brain makes us biologically wired to react to threatening information the same way as if we were being attacked. This all resorts to our beliefs. As a child, we grow up with certain beliefs and if someone comes along and challenges this belief we are going to backfire and disagree with it. The point of all this is to challenge your belief and not to get upset and backfire on the idea but to listen and change. This comic would be great to use in the classroom for grade level seven and up. You could put it into the social studies curriculum in the Power and Authority section. At this age, you may have students who want to disagree with the facts because of what a parent might say or what they have seen on social media. I think it is a good starting point to add to a lesson especially if you are talking about politics.

To teach digital literacy in the classroom there are some great tools out there to introduce it to your students like the comic or quizzes. The quizzes are a fun way to get your class to start thinking about digital literacy. Here is a quiz that allows you to guess the fake news headline. This one is quick and short, but you could use this as an introduction during a research essay. It could be used to show students that you need to do your research on more than one article because it can not always be clear and accurate. This example could be used in the grade 5 Saskatchewan curriculum – CC5.4 (f). Another quiz allows students to spot the troll. On this website, they give you a social media account and you must look through it to see if it is a fake or a real account. Lastly, there is another quiz – break the fake: news that allows students to view a news post with a picture and a headline. Their mission is to guess whether it is true or not. All these quizzes it is a great way to introduce a topic to start a lesson.

Last but not Least

I have finished my almost square dishcloth. With my dishcloth coming to an end I had to learn how to close it off. I learnt to cast off which is very simple. Learning how to make a dishcloth was probably one of the easiest things to start off stitching. I have seen videos of people knitting animals which amazes me. I however do not think I am as skilled as going off into knitting animals yet, but I would like to try and make a hat or mittens next.

With my knitting coming to an end and how I felt during the process I wanted to do some research to tie things together (pun intended). Firstly, to tell you how I felt during my knitting process I felt accomplished, and at ease. It was a very relaxing craft to do and at times I did feel frustrated (mostly at the beginning) because I was just starting to figure out the groove of things. I found an article on Mental Health America that will tell us a little bit more about why I was feeling this way while knitting. In the article The Mental Health Benefits of Knitting By LoveKnitting, they give us a few benefits of knitting (taken from the article) such as:

  • Lowered blood pressure
  • Reduced depression and anxiety
  • Slowed onset of dementia
  • Distraction from chronic pain
  • Increased sense of wellbeing
  • Reduced loneliness and isolation

Knitting is proven to give feelings of calmness and happiness, which it did for me. It also helps with chronic pain that I can relate to I Finished Half my Dishcloth post when Izzie was knitting a scarf during her cancer treatment.

When I was reading this article I came across a link where you can knit for charity! So if you love knitting and don’t know what to do with all the extra projects you have you can actually donate to many charities. Here is the website to check it out – https://www.lovecrafts.com/en-us/c/article/knitting-for-charity. You can knit for kids, preemie babies, animals, and the list goes on! With this in mind, I am going to look further into what I can do and try my next project.

Cybersleuthing

A person who searches the Internet for information about a company, both positive and negative, to keep abreast of public opinion. All Internet facilities are used, including the Web, newsgroups and chat rooms.

Definition of cybersleuth. PCMAG. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.pcmag.com/encyclopedia/term/cybersleuth#:~:text=(1)%20A%20person%20who%20searches,detective%20work%20using%20the%20Internet.

For the cybersleuth, I did one of my peers, Taylor. It is kind of funny because when you search her name “Taylor Shyngera” Taylor Swift comes up! Luckily Taylor gave me her middle name to try and find her on the internet. Once I plugged in her middle name more things seem to come up. I found her blog site and her Twitter. She was also tagged in a post on Facebook on Royal Drug Mart’s page where I could also find her Facebook page. This is where I found out she is from Melville and we have quite a few mutual friends. Looking at her social media I found out that she works at the Melville Heritage Museum as a manager. She also spends a lot of time with family and friends.

Through this experience, I realized how easy it was for someone to find out information about me or others. I am careful as to what I post on social media, and I do a yearly cleanup as well. Especially on Facebook, Facebook is what I use the most and what I have been using the longest. A couple years ago when I started University I went and looked at my Facebook and when I was younger I made dumb posts and deleted them. Now that I am older and more conscious of what I post I think twice before posting because one little post could destroy my reputation.

In the article Having Multiple Online Identities is More Normal than you Think, I found myself relating to it in a way that my Facebook is more family-friendly and my Instagram is where I post pictures for my friends rather than my family members. I can also say that I know a few people that have multiple accounts on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter. Especially teachers I found that they have 2 different accounts, one for their personal life and another for their ‘teacher persona.’ In the article, they talk about “finstagram” which is short for fake Instagram. This is the second account people have where people post funny pictures of themselves instead of their main account where everything looks ‘perfect.’ When I was in high school I found a lot of my peers made these accounts and mostly their close friends were allowed to see it instead of everyone.

In the Ted talk How one Tween can Ruin your Life by Jon Ronson, he talks about Justine who posted a post on Twitter that was meant to be funny in her eyes and got taken through a loop. This post was seen as racist and not FUNNY. This one tweet destroyed her life. People were shaming her on Twitter and saying rude awful things. This has to make you think twice about what you post. Even though Justine wanted her tweet to be funny, people read it in a different context than what she was meaning. It is scary to see how someone’s life can turn upside down with just one tweet!

Digital Citizenship Within the Curriculum

Digital citizenship is the continuously developing norms of appropriate, responsible, and empowered technology use.

Ribble, M. (2017). Nine elements. Digital Citizenship. Retrieved from https://www.digitalcitizenship.net/nine-elements.html

In the article Nine Themes of Digital Citizenship, I explored the different ways digital citizenship has taken over. When comparing it to the Saskatchewan Curriculum.

As I think about digital citizenship I can remember a time in grades 7 and 8 when my teacher Mr. T used his blog to keep in touch with parents and students about what is happening in the classroom, along with posting weekly spelling test words that we needed for the week. I did a little research and found his blog site again and saw that he still uses it for his classroom. I have also heard stories about an elementary school teacher who introduced her students to blogging and made them blog for the school year. This is a good way to incorporate English into the classroom and for parents to see their children’s growth throughout the school year.

So, how should we integrate digital citizenship into the classroom?

First, we have to recognize that not everyone has access to technology inside or outside of the classroom. A huge realization of this was during the COVID years when teachers had to move online. Not every student could access the internet and learn what was being taught.

Secondly, if students have access to technology and the internet we as teachers need to teach them about the safety of social media and the internet. In the Saskatchewan curriculum Grade 4 Health Education – USC4.4 Determine basic personal responsibility for safety and protection in various environments/situations. Indicator d. examines cyber safety etiquette and related safety risks and strategies as a way to introduce the pros and cons of social media and the internet. We can teach students about cyberbullying and how we could use social media and the internet in a positive way.

Only 4 Stitches Left!

It has been an extremely busy week for me, but I took some time to almost finish my dishcloth. I still need more time and I am continuously working towards my end goal. I had to work on the other half of my dishcloth. As I was working towards the first half I was adding a stitch each time to get it bigger. Then I had to decrease my dishcloth by taking away a stitch. I learned the yarn over technique, which is where I start with two stitches and get to one stitch. This is how it ties together so it does not unravel. I also learned how to knit two stitches together. This process was a little difficult because I found it needed a little more attention so I didn’t miss something. If I would have missed a stitch or done it wrong it would have all come loose and then I would not be very happy, but everything worked out just fine and now I am here…

As you can see in the photo above I am almost done and just need to watch the last bit of the video to see how it all ties up. This time while I was knitting I put my headphones in and listened to a podcast. I tried my best to reach into my interests and try and make it educational for myself.

Raising Anti-Racist, Anti-Bias Kids with Britt Hawthorne by Good Inside with Dr. Becky from Spotify

I listened to the podcast above. This podcast is about parenting, so not so much about teaching, but I always think the teaching is almost kind of the same thing as being a parent. Parenting is sort of like teaching in the sense that we both teach children, but we teach them different things. In this podcast, they talk about anti-racism and anti-bias, about how it is and should not be a bad thing to talk about. They give a really good example about being in the grocery store and a child pointing out that someone else has a different colour of skin. Usually, parents will be taken aback by this comment and say something along the lines of “we will talk about it in the car!” But that is not what we want to do. We want to address that they notice it and explain to them the answer. Give kids time to process your answer and then invite them to ask more questions. Shutting their question down makes children think that they did something wrong when in reality it is okay to notice these differences and to ask questions. This is the way we teach the next generation of children (our students) to be anti-bias.

Looking into an App while Knitting

Android and Apple App: Row Counter

In this app when you open it, it has tools, community, RC Patterns, and my projects category at the bottom. When I first open it to the tools section. It will show you a bunch of helpful things to get started on your first project. I personally really like the Glossary where it gives you all the abbreviations and what it means.

The next section I would like to cover is the RC Patterns section. This is what I am going to look at for my next project. There are countless ideas of what a person could make next. I am not even sure what I want to do next, but if anyone has any ideas, feel free to shout out!

This app is very easy to use. The only part I am going to have trouble with is where it tells you the stitch and instructions on how to make something. I am going to have to do some research about what everything means and how to do a certain stitch. Bare with me during my learning project.

While discovering how to use this app I thought about how I could incorporate it into the classroom. As this app does not seem to go into the classroom well, I thought about the knitting process and how this app helps to keep track of your stitches. It could be used as an art project to stop at a place and then begin again in a few days without forgetting where you left off. As well as it could be used in the math curriculum using adding and subtracting and dimensions to figure out how big you want your square. To use this app inside the classroom we just need to think outside of the box a little bit. Here are 5 Reasons Why Knitting Should Be Taught in Schools.

I Finished Half of my Dishcloth!

I flew by and finished half of my dishcloth. Honestly, it was a breeze! Once I got the hang of it I just kept going and going and going. At times I did make a few”whoopsies” so there are some holes in my dishcloth, but I just keep reminding myself that this is my first time and nothing is ever perfect. As I made a few whoopsies I also added a couple of stitches. In my last blog post Starting off my Knitting Process, I states that I only needed 37 stitches on my needle, but I accidentally did 39. Which is OKAY! It only means my dishcloth is going to be a little bit bigger. I am starting to like the aspect of it looking not perfect.

I also wanted to share that while I was knitting I was rewatching Grey’s Anatomy. I am on season five episode 19 where (if you have watched it before) Izzy finds out she has cancer. I find it comical that Izzy was knitting a green scarf for Dr. Bailey at the same time as I was knitting.

Anyway, I think I am going to very quickly here finish up my dishcloth! This happened way quicker than I had expected it to happen honestly. Once I am finished I think I am going to try a different more difficult project. If you have any ideas for me or anything you would like to see me accomplish comment down below.